De la Rúa's standing recobres
Argentine president Fernando De la Rúa's public opinion standing increased two points at the end of July compared to a month ago reaching 49%, in spite of the tough economic decisions of the last few weeks that included a general tax hike and salary reductions for government employees. Surprisingly the national Gallup poll of 1.252 people taken between July 22nd.- 27th., also indicates that while Mr. De la Rúa's image is recovering as well as optimism about the economy, a growing number of Argentines are not satisfied with the administration's current job overall, and particularly with the management of the economy. The poll shows that President De la Rúa has a positive image among 47% of Argentines; below average, 32% and negative, 15%. Actually the number of critics dropped three points from June when it stood at 18%. However the president is still several points below the 56% approval of last March and May's 53%. As far as the administration performance, only 21% consider it positive, , 49% below average and 17% negative. The situation has worsened since last March and is particularly strong regarding the financial performance: 60% consider it negative and only 28% positive. However, Gallup detected that consumer confidence is rising, 41% in July compared to 38% last June.
Unemployment, main concern
Unemployment has jumped as the main concern of Argentines, both personally and nationally, according to the Gallup opinion poll published last Sunday in La Nación.Asked to identify which was the main problem, for them, their families and the country, unemployment topped the list both personally 41% and for the country 47%. This has meant a three and seven points increase since last May, and a growing tendency since two years ago: in 1998 unemployment was a serious concern for 30% of those polled, a year ago 40%. Unemployment in Argentina is currently at a historic rate of 15,4%. Unemployment has also displaced corruption as the main issue: while in November '97, 30% of Argentines were concerned, it dropped to 19% in August '99 and now stands at 15%. Insecurity ranks second to unemployment as a personal concern, 16% (it jumps to 2